Redeeming Meetings – Advice For Photographers

Isn’t it amazing how little time is spent actually shooting on any given project?! As a manager, I’d love to put a time counter on my photographers to get an accurate assessment as to exactly how much time they spend preparing for, participating in, and dealing with the extraneous items associated with a shoot. It’s just a reality of the business that, in order for a photographer to get behind the camera, they also have to contribute to the details leading up to and immediately following a shoot. Sure, there are varying degrees of effort, and sometimes there are producers, assistants, or support staff that can take on some of the details, but the photographer is always engaged in the non-shoot elements to some degree. However, a photographer isn’t without the opportunity to exert some control over this preparation process, and that brings us to the subject of the all important meeting or, should I say, meetINGS.

Meetings with clients and stakeholders are necessary in the preparation leading up to, and sometimes following, a shoot; but so often, all that time spent on the phone, in conference calls, and face-to-face sessions is a liability. First off, I have to say that most meetings simply end up producing more work than they’re worth. Secondly, they take up precious time, can drain creativity, and steal passion for the project. However, complaining won’t help you so let me unpack a bit of helpful advice: take control of the meetings you participate in, at least as far as your part is concerned. The biggest concern from a business perspective is that you’re likely only associating billable hours to the shoot itself and, therefore, the prep time – and especially these meetings – is a blow to your earning potential. The way to extract more value for yourself is to set up some parameters and expectations for the meetings you’re involved with.

What’s wrong with meetings you ask? Well, the erroneous justifications can look something like this:

• Someone wants to give or receive an update on tasks. This is why most meetings take place, but it is not a great justification for a meeting because the flow of information is unidirectional. Send an e-mail instead.

• The meeting is called because some slackers in the group and the boss want to get everyone back on track. Don’t be a slacker and don’t subject yourself to working with slackers if you can help it; besides, berating or embarrassing people in front of their peers doesn’t improve motivation, and it wastes everyone else’s time.

• Meetings seem like a good place to clear up a disagreement – but that’s bogus. If there’s a difference of opinion about a project, stakeholders should approach each other individually and find ways to move forward. In a group setting, there’s a bit of a gang mentality and that’s just not cool.

• Meeting to build excitement is stupid. Motivation is a daily management challenge, not a one-time fix. Private conversations are better, but something social is ideal. A pint after work, a spontaneous coffee run, a small gift, or a quick encouraging phone call are all better than a meeting.

So many inefficiencies and liabilities can stem from meetings and vocational photographers would be well served by having as few of them as possible. When that’s not possible, do everything you can to ensure they’re productive, valuable, and engaging. A meeting should have a clear goal and be an open dialog; otherwise, I call a foul and so should you.

Advice for Weekend Warriors: Without clients to worry about your likely to have very few meetings pertaining to your photography; however, when attending meetings at work or in your community use that time to practice your meeting decorum.

Advice for Working Warriors: Here are a few ways you can take charge of your meeting environment:

1. Before agreeing to a project, include a request for a meeting schedule or provide your own schedule – one that fits your calendar. Pre-scheduled meetings are very successful at limiting the emergency or single-issue meetings.

2. Plan something for immediately following the scheduled meeting so that you have a hard stop, and make sure everyone knows this before the meeting starts. This also has a tendency to push the important items up to the beginning of the meeting, leaving the silly details for the end, which you can politely excuse yourself from.

3. Work at being the best meeting attendee or leader. Whether in person or on the phone, rock every meeting with a great attitude and be solutions-oriented. And be early, or at least on time. When you’re late, you’re not entering the meeting from a position of strength.

4. End each meeting with a summary of YOUR action items. Don’t worry about everyone else; just make sure everyone knows that you’ve got things covered.

This is an excerpt from Corwin Hiebert’s ebook “Growing The VisionMonger, 10 Things a Manager Can Teach You About Running & Growing Your Business”.

The Stupidly Simple SEO System That Rocked the IM World

There’s a sleepy hamlet at the foot of a mountain range in Scotland. In that village lives a quiet unassuming man who has been quietly raking in a steady, ever-growing income online using nothing but free one page websites that take less than ten minutes to build.

The guys name is Phil Henderson and he’s finally agreed to release his Stupidly Simple SEO system to the public.

Phil hasn’t reinvented the wheel here; no he’s simply took a proven concept and made it better.

You may have heard the story about Colonel Harland Sanders, yes the guy who gave us KFC. Well what you may not know is the “secret” recipe wasn’t always a great hit, in fact Colonel Sanders recipe was turned down no less than one-thousand and nine times before it was accepted once!

Now his original recipe was good; however, there was something missing from the magical 10 herb and spice mix (later to become the trademark 11 ingredients) Salt!! Yep the 11th ingredient was nothing more than humble Sea Salt! The addition of this one ingredient was the difference between one-thousand and ten failures or the MASSIVE success KFC enjoy’s today!

The Stupidly Simple SEO system gives you all the ingredients including the magical “11th ingredient”…

If you’ve ever looked at traditional SEO systems, work-books or courses; you’ll have noticed that they are full of jargon, industry terminology, complicated and technical processes. Well, fear not, the Stupidly Simple SEO system breaks down each step into an easy to understand, step-by-step, easy to follow strategy even a six year old child could understand and implement.

I’ll be up front, this is not true SEO; however, if you look at the core purpose of SEO it is this, “to get a website ranked highly within the search engines so potential visitors and buyers can find you”. With this in mind, the Stupidly Simple SEO system does exactly what it says on the tin!!

Although the system is not full-blown SEO, the sites created using the outlined steps, have beaten many heavily SEO’d sites into submission. To give you some idea of the power of these sites check these stats out.

*3 on Google for a highly competitive and profitable Forex Trading Search term *5 out of 12.5 million for an MP3 player based search term *1 for a targeted “local search” term that brought in 60 new prospects within 12 hours! *7 out of 22.5 million for a childrens book related search term

And there are many, many more examples where they came from…

In fact, Phil Henderson, the Stupidly Simple SEO creator, knew he had struck gold when he sold 22 laptops from a one a page, free site that took only 10 minutes to set up…

Here’s his story…

“I had been playing about with the usual methods of generating free traffic, you know things like, Squidoo, blogger, blogs, article writing, forum posts etc when I stumbled on this little site. At first I was using this simply to provide backlinks to my other sites. It was so far down the levels of my linking structure so I wasn’t really paying attention to it fully.

Then one day I noticed something weird. The main site I had spent three weeks nurturing using top SEO strategies had been out-ranked by my free one page site I had built!!

I couldn’t believe it… I had invested three weeks of my time and energy trying to get this site to page one of Google and here was this one-page site that had took me less than ten minutes to build out ranking me in under 15 minutes. Yep, within 15 minutes from pressing “submit” this site had hit page one of Google, more importantly it had ranked two positions higher than my fully optimized web site!!

It hit me like a thunderbolt… I stopped all my other activities and looked at that one page in detail. I looked at the way I had structured the post, the links I had incorporated, word count, keyword density, anchor text absolutely everything that I thought would have given this one page mini-site a better SEO score than my main site. I found nothing of great significance, nothing that I could see making that much difference.

I knew that this couldn’t be a one off and I had to find out why this had happened.

The next four hours were spent breaking down each element of the post into minute detail. I simply had to find that “11th ingredient” and then I found it…

It was staring me in the eye all of the time. Excitedly, I began to churn out page after page and they all ranked on Google in a matter of minutes. The quickest being 3 minutes!!

I had found a seam of Gold and it was time to go mining”.

When I first read the above I was skeptical; however, Phil has photographic and video proof of the examples above. More than this, Phil has agreed to shoot an “over the shoulder” video that outlines the precise steps he takes when building these one page profit pulling sites.

This system really is a game changer and many people who have struggled to make any real money online are using this to pay their car payments, mortgages and even exotic holidays.

Yes this system works; however, you have to know how to work the system.

But don’t take my word for it, go see for yourself.

Finding a Professional Photographer

In today’s world it doesn’t take much to snap a photo. However finding a good photographer in Modeling can mean a career or not! With these dire consequences at hand we must make sure that the one we choose is the right one! Whether you are in New York City, Detroit, Dallas, Miami, Los Vegas, or Las Angeles there are a few tips that will remain the same. Below are some tips to remember when choosing a good photographer.

Tip 1: Referral- When you are choosing a good photographer in the world of modeling you must always know that they are good at what they do before you hire them. The best way to do this is getting a referral from someone in the field of modeling you know. Since they have already worked with them they can give you more information about them.

Tip 2: Experience- do not be afraid to ask them what experience they have had in photography. Asking them questions will give you a better understanding about them. After all in modeling the pictures are a big chuck of landing jobs. Ask for schooling and papers they may have to prove it. This will keep you well informed.

Tip 3: Equipment- Finding out what type of equipment they have and will be using is important. After all a photographer is only as good as his last photo.

Keeping these things in mind will help you find a photographer that meets your needs and can get you the jobs you deserve. Remember don’t be afraid to ask the questions. The only stupid question is the one not asked!